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Islamic Factor in Foreign Policy of the Russian Federation



Zuzana Duda – Ľubomír Čech


Politické vedy, Volume 26, Number 4/2023, pages 8-35


Recommended form for quotation of the article / Odporúčaná forma citácie článku:

DUDA, Z. – ČECH, Ľ. 2023. Islamic Factor in Foreign Policy of the Russian Federation. In Politické Vedy. Vol. 26, no. 4, pp. 8-35. ISSN 1335 – 2741. Available at:



In the contemporary international arena, religion plays an increasingly pivotal role in shaping diplomatic strategies. This paper investigated the growing significance of Islam in shaping the foreign policy of the Russian Federation, aiming to examine the ways in which the religious factor is included in Russia's foreign policy and the tools the Russian Federation uses to defend its interests abroad through Islam. Our study, structured into three chapters, provided insights into the multifaceted role of religion in Russian foreign policy, as well as the specific ways in which the Islamic dimension influences it. Additionally, it presented selected activities carried out by Islamic religious organizations with the aim of supporting the country’s foreign policy. We found that Russia integrates religious considerations into its diplomatic initiatives and employs Islam as a tool to advance its interests globally. Russian religious leaders, aligning with the country's rhetoric of patriotism, traditional values, and antagonism towards the West, play a crucial role in legitimizing domestic and foreign policy agendas and effectively complement state authorities involved in Russia’s foreign policy. While the impact of Islam on Russia's foreign policy is significant, its evolving potential remains subject to ongoing developments and challenges. The compatibility of religious imperatives with the complexities of multi-religiosity and political elites within the Russian Federation continues to be a topic of exploration.

Key words: Russian Federation, Islam, Foreign Policy, Religion, Religious Organisation

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